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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This post is from the ROA site I belong to. I did this a while ago.

This is how I fixed my aged and cracked steering wheel. This is the first time I’ve attempted to restore one. Having seen several wheels restored on the HAMB, I was thinking that this would be totally different because it’s plastic, not acrylic (or whatever older wheels were made of) and wasn’t sure what I would use to fix it.

The epoxy like JB seemed too hard and might have issues bonding to the soft plastic. Then I remembered fixing the rear bumper on my ’95 Roadmaster Wagon with a plastic ‘bondo’ that was flexible and bonded very well. So I am doing the same fix here.

The first thing to do was to de-grease the wheel. I used quick-prep but denatured alcohol should work just as well.

You can see that the wheel had come apart at the center pretty bad. I sanded under the part that is lifted to get all the rust and scale off, then quick cleaned it. I put a bunch of the filler into the gap and clamped it down to hold it tight until the filler hardened.





Each end of the center bar looked like this.


 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
All three of the pin holes on the rim cracked as well.



This is the filler that I used.



I forgot to get shots of sanding and opening the cracks. Basically I used 120 grit sandpaper to rough up the finish. The cracks were opened up with sandpaper, an air grinder, and a razor blade. After the first sanding I blew the dust off and cleaned it again with the quick clean.
Here’s the end of one of the arms after the first pass of filler.



The lower portion.

 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Then I used plastic primer / adhesion promoter.



To get to here so far.



I’ll get some more sandable primer and shoot it with a couple three coats and see what it looks like. I haven’t decided what color I am going to do the interior in, but It will probably be black. I know that I don’t really care for a full gloss on the interior trim like the wheel and console so I’ll finish the color with a semi-flat clear.

More photos when the next steps are done.
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Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Here's the finished wheel.

I used a 2K primer and sanded it like any body work. 2 passes were enough. I did use some Icing (polyester filler) to fill in any minor imperfections that were missed with the first filler. Fill and sand, fill and sand. I sprayed it a VW color - Silver Arrow - and cleared it with a flat clear.

I think I am going to do a black and silver interior if I can get the silver in a '65 pattern. I know it is a '64 color. I really liked a '64 that I saw that was black exterior and silver interior. Anyway, I need to do all the plastic trim on the interior that is tan now and I don't want it to look too shiny.

The wheel feels great. If you look real close, you can tell that the center arm has a little more character than it should (a little more curvy).


 

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Very nice Mike!
I've looked at the posts on the HAMB site also about steering wheel repair, and did it on my stock Austin's banjo wheel to save it. MIne wasn't too bad in some areas, but the outter wheel was shrunk so badly that it actually pulled in towrds the center until the metal hoop popped free! I had to completely cut some portions out to get back to a part that was still in it's original position.
You can see the worst part at around 8 o'clock position in this picture:


I don't have a good after picture, but here's one after I finished the wheel. I used CRC putty type epoxy that is kneaded to mix. I ended up having to put a lace on steering wheel cover on the wheel, as the outter ring was just too tiny for my big meathooks to grip.
 
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